By Regis Nhumba
Joyce Chikomo (21) says her life will never be the same again after she had a brutal, all night sexual encounter with her ex-boyfriend. She alleges her ex-boyfriend had taken sex enhancing drugs without her knowledge and forced himself on her the whole night.
Now Joyce feels her right to experience safe and pleasurable sex was violated. She has since terminated the relationship but is bitter about her last sexual encounter.
“I was left traumatised by the encounter. I had heard a lot of my peers talking about the ‘blue diamonds’, a sex enhancing drug that seems prevalent at our university. I never discussed the pills with my boyfriend. Our relationship was based on trust and mutual understanding,” says Joyce.
Joyce says before the unforgettable incident, she had normal and pre-planned sexual encounters with her ex-boyfriend. She says her boyfriend would only visit and leave at the agreed time. On the fateful day, Joyce says she had discussed with her boyfriend to come for a sleepover since they had no lecturers the following day.
“I believe my ex-boyfriend took an overdose of the sex enhancing drugs. When we agreed that he will come for a sleepover, I thought we would just have normal sex. I was surprised when the encounter went on and on. I told him that I was tired and wanted to rest. My pleas fell on deaf ears,” says Joyce.
Joyce says the sex enhancing drugs are prevalent on the black market and many young men on campus buy them to impress their girlfriends.
Joyce says following the unforgettable night, she had no option but to break up with her boyfriend. She says the incident had traumatised her and she could not risk a repeat of the same incident.
Mgcini Mkhize (23) is another student at the same university. He says there is widespread use of sex enhancing drugs among tertiary students and attributes it to peer pressure. Mgcini says the drugs are easily available on the black market and some pharmacies.
“There is peer pressure especially among young men to impress their girlfriends by protracted sex encounters.
“Most of the time the young men take these sex enhancing drugs without the knowledge of their female partners. Some girls may not even get to know that their partners are using the sex enhancing drugs,” says Mgcini.
Mgcini adds that there are cases where the use of sex drugs has created relationship problems.
“Most of these drugs are not registered in the country and we do not know the medical side effects of the drugs. Maybe there are long term side effects that may cause health problems,” says Mgcini.
Makala Sachikanza (22), a student from another university in Harare says young men and women are driven by curiosity to use sex enhancing drugs.
“I think few girls are directly involved in the use of these drugs because it puts them at the risk of getting raped. The drugs should not be made available to young people who are not married. There is obviously some side effects if people start to use the drugs from an early age,” says Makala.
The use of sex enhancing drugs should be regulated and Makala feels that only those with prescriptions should use the drugs. She says girls should be cautious when they engage in sexual relationships to avoid violent sexual encounters.
This article was written as part of the Creative Centre for Communication and Development (CCCD) project that seeks to strengthen the voices of women and girls, especially under the grim impact of the Coronavirus (COVID 19). CCCD has used the WhatsApp mobile application to train women and girls so that they express their voices on what is happening in their communities.